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Nick Heyming

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since Oct 09, 2013
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Recent posts by Nick Heyming

This is an idea whose time has come! I'm working with a benefit corp, Grow Games Interactive, that is going to be launching one of the world's largest citizen science initiatives using social media and video games to propagate the ideas and technology.

It's called SEEDS: The Game, and its all about implementing permaculture and then documenting the results with relevant climate, microclimate, soil, and technical information. We're looking for partners and team members as we build our first prototype, and we've already got Elaine Ingham on board as an advisor. Hopefully we can get someone like Paul to advise as well, wink wink...
5 years ago
I founded a video game company (a Benefit Corp called http://www.growgamesinteractive.com]Grow Games Interactive) so that we could make games about that integrate permaculture challenges and get people doing real-life seed saving. We've launched a crowdfunding campaign here at www.igg.me/at/seeds where we're giving rewards as seeds, weather sensors, farm to table meals, and download codes to be alpha or beta testers. We're creating the games through game jams and hackathons at ecovillages and impact centers across the US.

We'd love to integrate with the permaculture community, as we think that our plan is one of the most profound and lasting ways to care for the earth, the people, and return surpluses around the planet. We're doing what we can to make this as diverse and fun an effort as possible, check out our crowdfunding page and we'd love whatever support or feedback we can get. Thanks!

www.igg.me/at/seeds
6 years ago
That's awesome! I was a disaster relief worker for three years, and while I focused on the relief and redevelopment phase as opposed to the 'rescue' phase, many of my friends worked for the rescue operations and could have used a crowdsourced way to find out where they were needed. It seems brilliant, I hope that it catches on!

I wonder if someone could design something that would help with resource allocation from donors to recipients during the relief phase? We found the best way to handle it analog was to create regional networking centers, physical locations, that helped coordinate the incoming workers and supplies. It wasn't a perfect system, but just having a location where people congregated because it had bathrooms and wifi was a huge help, and the collaboration that arose from it saved alot of duplicated efforts.

Maybe an app could help those kinds of projects get implemented with templates or something?
6 years ago
I live in a 9 acre intentional community/ecovillage in San Diego County called the Emerald Village. We read Diana's books when we were first getting started, and managed to come up with a consensus model that works for us. We've learned a lot over the last 4 years, and are still together on the same land and have expanded to temporary work resident programs, several of us have had children since we moved here, and we've even hosted a permaculture design course.

It's not easy, and Paul's points that you can't always expect people to be noble are accurate. There's a level of trust needed though for it to work, and it took us years to get past our initial mistrust for each other. There's also a level of flexibility and willingness to sacrifice the perfect ideal to get a good and acceptable outcome. It's all a big experiment, and if you're not having fun and learning, then why do it?
This is awesome, we should talk. We're building something similar at www.seedsthegame.com
6 years ago
As the father of a three year old who is just starting to get really distracted by video games, this is an important subject for me. My goal is to build as many permaculture and growing themed games as possible myself so he can play those and learn while he's playing.
6 years ago
The first game we played with the decks when we got them was to hand out all the cards and play PEACE! It's like war, except instead of the highest ranked card or suit winning, it was the coolest one as decided by the collective. Made for a fun game, especially as people lobbied for why hugelkultur beats Holzer, or why comfrey should be Penny Livingston...
6 years ago
We're building a permaculture video game for all ages at www.seedsthegame.com , and we're inviting anyone interested in helping us build it to come out to our game jams and join our team. The next one is this weekend at the Shed in Pasadena.
6 years ago
I'm familiar with Peaceful Valley (groworganic.com) and Fedco Seeds, but does anyone know another organic cover crop seed company that is a bit more affordable? Trying to get something full of dynamic accumulators and nitrogen fixers for our food forest. We're in a mediterranean/temperate riparian climate in Southern California (20 frosts a year, 1 deep freeze).
6 years ago
Well, we've been working on that for some time. We're going to limit how much people can progress through the minigames before they get cut off. Many social media games employ a similar tact, where they cut their players off after 15 minutes or so each day. In most cases, that is when they give their players an opportunity to advance by 'gifting' or 'sharing' virtual goods with their social networks - free marketing for the app, but obnoxious to the recipients of this spam.

In our case, we're going to have people cut off after so much time (or at least stop their advancement to more difficult virtual challenges) unless they go outside and actually do something in real life. As simple as checking in at a park or farmers market, maybe taking a picture of a flower, or their nursery, or an interesting fruit. Then, they have the option to share the picture or check-in with their friends and family, and instead of just spamming them with worthless game invites, they're actually showing them something they did in real life.

We're hoping that overcomes the 'invite fatigue' many people experience. We're also tying our currency to the number of 'likes' that our players get (controlling for bots and gaming the system), so they're encouraged to do things that their friends and family are actually proud of.

We'll see how it works, we're still working on the back end right now, getting all the databases and APIs to play nice with each other. We're still taking on investors and contributors.